Kierah (lupinotuum) wrote in icon_tutorial,

Natural Coloring

Hallo all; 'tis t3h first tutorial, using a Crap Cap from a The Hours youtube fanvideo.

Heh. 'a The Hours'. Sounds funny. :D

(the tutorial comes free with a rant on cropping)

Written for Paint Shop Pro 8, or any other versions. Easily translatable from program to program.


A-take your cap. For best results, use either a Crap Cap, or use a suitably dark cap.

2. Crop thy cap. In order to make your cap Quite Interesting (note the capitals!!1!!one!!), you want to move the focus point of your icon to the right, left, top, bottom, etc of your icon. NEVER EVER EVER put the focus of your icon in the center! It makes your cap look UNINTERESTING. NOT GOOD NOT GOOD NOT GOOD. Now, I want to focus in on the Lovely Meryl Streep's face. Take a look at the icon with the focus dead center:


What a lark! What a plunge! First the Happy Iconmaker decides to make nice icon of the Lovely Meryl Streep, moving on his/her merry way, whistling along- and then they make the fatal mistake of centering the icon on Meryl's face! Of course, her loveliness brightens up any icon, but how uninteresting the crop is! A much better crop would be the following:


How awesome! Instead of just being Blah, our icon provides Meryl (as Clarissa) with some space to move! You can add text and/or brushes now! Some other examples of Good Crops are below:


3. Now, let's actually take our Crap Cap base. Here it is: not quite pretty. DD: I wants to make it pretty! Pretty, I say!


4. So, my first step is to lighten it. ALWAYS LIGHTEN YOUR CAPS, CHILDREN, IF THEY ARE UNWORKABLY DARK. So, I just stroll on over to my... ADJUSTMENT LAYERS! -lightning flashes and thunder booms- Make a Levels layer... 'Cause I said so, FOOL.
Go onto RGB and a-input the numbers like so:

Input Levels: 0, 1, 160

And you can just leave your Output as is. 'Cause Output is not cool. NOT COOL, I SAY. D< (no offense, Outputers... Ha. Outputers! Like... IN HARRY POTTER, WEWT... only Dumby's is a Put-Outer or whatsit)



5. Quite light, EH? If you answered yes, my ducks, you are WRONG. Yes, it is light, but NOT LIGHT ENOUGH (unless you're a-going for t3h dramatic effect, but you can use other tuts for that). I want BRIGHTNESS... I want CONTRAST. So, in order to give myself what I want (this is an iconmaker's equivalent of being given free ice cream) I use a.... (drum roll please)... BRIGHTNESS AND CONTRAST LAYER. OOOO: You would have NEVER GUESSED.

Brightness: 19
Contrast: 15



6. Contrasty! Lightness! Wewt! But... IT'S NOT ENOUGH! OOO: WHAT MORE CAN THIS DASTARDLY TUTORIAL WRITER WANT?             Well, I'll tell you... EXCLUSION LAYERS. DUN DUN DUN! Make an EXCLUSION LAYER OF DOOM, if you please, by creating a new raster layer and setting the blending mode to EXCLUSION. Fill it with a spiffy color I like to call #000014 , and VOILA.

  +    =  


7. Duplicate the Exclusion Layer of Doom and set this duplicate to 50% opacity. Why? BECAUSE I SAID SO, MORTAL. D<

  +  (at 50%) = 

OOO: Exclusiony, my dear Dawson!

8. Now, we're off on our WAY to a HALFWAY DECENT ICON. From a CRAP CAP, no less! O: But now... Isn't it starting to look quite plain to you? Less spiffy and more Blah? Remember, my lambs, we are aiming to get an icon that is the ANTI-BLAH. And as everyone knows, the Anti-Blah is... a Truly Wonderful Icon. What we do now is add a... SOFT LIGHT LAYER. That's right, chickadees, just add another layer and set the blending mode to soft light. Fill it with my good friend #A3A3A8 , and KA-CHING! You have your (not very Wonderful) result.

  +    =  

9. Looking at that result, I am not ashamed to say this:

EEEEW. NO NO NO. How very BLAH. I must FIX THIS- this horrible washed-out grayish-bluish ickyness.So, what do I do? I MAKE A BURN      LAYER, OF COURSE. Follow my lead, little halflings, and I shall show you. Make a new layer, set blend mode to Burn, and fill it with t3h      handy-dandy #FDE9C3 , and hey presto!

  +    =  

It looks... -pause for dramatic effect- HUMAN. AND ORANGE. And as everyone knows, we humans are delightfully orange. (Not tangerine,     though. Damn.)

10. I remain dissatisfied. Copy Merged (Ctrl + Alt + C for all y'all PSP-ers) and paste your copy-ed pic onto a new layer, my pork dumplings. Now, invert the image (Negative Image under 'Adjust' for PSP). Looks quite... Odd-ish. Very BLUE. Just the thing we need to counter the     Orangey-Ness! Set the blending mode of this layer to Color, 6% opacity.

(6% opacity)  +    = 

Voila! C'est finis. Comment if you like, and please: I don't mind if you don't improvise, but this is best used on bases, my hamsterlings! Show me what you have, and if any options on this don't work with your icon, you're welcome to fiddle about with opacities, blending modes, etc.

Have fun, my fellow iconers!
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